It’s that time of year again. Most of us are affected at some point by a simple head cold at minimum, or a full-blown flu that knocks us for six if we really draw the short straw. It’s hard not to give in to the misery when our day to day routine is interrupted for the sake of a snotty nose and an aching, tired body.
So what about work, study, domestic tasks, caring for dependents, exercise, and fun with family and friends? Let’s face it: being sick gets in the way.
Many of us don’t have the luxury to take time out and give ourselves the care and rest that we need when we are infirmed. My argument is, however, that many of us can afford it, despite believing we can’t.
If you think, “but I wanted to get things done this week”, or “I feel bad if I have a day off work” then you may want to rethink your priorities and see the benefits of taking some time out to get well.
I recommend writing a simple checklist: on one side, list the benefits of taking some time out. On the other side, list what would need to be compromised in order to take time out. This can be helpful if you are the type to believe that it’s noble to keep on going, no matter what.
You may decide that you can do most of what you had planned for the week and still feel that you are taking care of yourself. Things that are not urgent can wait until next week.
Or, you may find that you really are feeling exhausted and unwell, and doing what you had planned will not be constructive, anyway.
The point is that you have come to your decision with forethought and informed choice - not just because you feel you should always soldier on at all costs.
Remember the benefits of good, old-fashioned rest to yourself and those around you when you really need it!